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What is Shirokuro 400?
- Black and White chromogenic film
- 400 iso
- 27 exposures
- $10 a roll
- DX coded canisters
Shirokuro means Black and White in Japanese and 400 refers to the ISO of the film (speed). Shirokuro is special because although its a black and white negative film, its emulsion allows it to be processed with C-41 chemicals. This means processing B&W for this film won't cost an arm and a leg, and labs that process it are more widely and readily located around Australia.
The concept of B&W C-41 processing is not new. The term 'chromogenic film' was popularised by Ilford XP2, and the recently discontinued Kodak BW400CN. This film does not only have the ability to be processed with C-41, in fact you can also process it with traditional black and white chemicals!
Its most interesting property is that, because the image is formed with dye-clouds, the films are more grainy in the least exposed "shadow" areas and least grainy in the most exposed "highlight" areas—the opposite of conventional B&W film, which are grainiest where they are exposed the most. This makes it particularly well suited for subjects with large areas of bright highlight areas, such as skies, sunlit clouds and beaches. It's a great "days of summer" film.
In conclusion, Shirokuro is a sharp, fast, fine grain black and white film. It can be used for any photographic subject. The film yields high contrast negatives and has an extremely wide exposure latitude making it suitable for use in varied lighting conditions. Most importantly, Shirokuro is easy to process. It is a black and white film which is processed in C-41 chemicals alongside colour negative films.